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PREDD\ TAYLOR, drummer with the 1 Palace Theatre Orchestra in Manchester, wishes it to be known that the item ■‘Drummer Freddy Taylor, who has married since I last had a line from him, has a fabulous little cottage on the outskirts of Dublin” in June’s Angles by Norman Fields does not refer to him
Freddy, who’s been at the Palace for the last two years after a long stint with Jimmy Leach's Organolians, has been married for quite some time and the only cottage he has is a modest dwelling in the swinging suburb of Moston.
Now we’ve cleared that up perhaps Mrs. Taylor is reassured that Freddy isn’t a bigamist! Freddy tells me that many of his musician friends have asked to rent that
fabulous little cottage in Dublin. For dirty weekends?
Art Van Damme cocktail-stvle music is played every Saturday at the Hillcliff Park Hydro, near Warrington, by the Johnny Coleclough Trio, comprising Johnny (accordion), Phil Sullivan (bass) and Mike Corcorran (drums).
Johnny is something of a squeeze box pioneer in this area. In 1954, at the age of 21, he took over the accordion chair at the plush Midland Hotel. After three years he formed his own trio and took up residency at the city’s Cromford Club. Then he moved to the Monico Restaurant in Oldham for 18 months. Before going to Hillcliff he did a lot of hotel work at the Queens in Leeds and the Adelphi in Liverpool.
He hated
a young boy in Manchester, Harry Hayward hated the piano so much that when it was time for lessons he used to cry and run away to hide in the nearby Bogart Hole Clough park.
But now, 39-year-old Harry (who lives in Alkrington, near Manchester) is glad that his parents made him stick at the instrument, for to-day he is just about the busiest pianist and broadcaster in the North.
He has been featured in dozens of BBC variety and musical programmes such as Song For You, Star Train, Call Boy (I wonder why there was never a follow-up to this show, Call Girl, for instance?), The Al Read Show, By The Fireside, and the Reginald Dixon Half-Hour, and on several TV shows, the latest of which is Barn Dance, featuring Harry’s Hustlers. Says Black Jake Hayward : “We wear all the gear—lumberjack shirts, cowboy boots.”
Harry has been a BBC (Manchester) staff pianist for 11 years. He was resident pianist for eight years on the Northern airings of the late but not lamented Workers’ Playtime. Mind you, nobody holds that against him. He’s also played at BBC auditions for something like 2,000 hopeful singers and entertainers.
It was when he was in his teens that Harry first realised how great an asset musical ability can be. During a Watch Night service at his local church, the organist fell ill and Harry was asked to take over. The vicar complimented him afterwards. “I was just 13 and I felt real proud. Suddenly, all those hours of practice I’d resented now seemed very worthwhile,” he told me.
Upon leaving school, Harry became a professional musician and. for many years, used to cycle to the dance hall where he played.
His first broadcast came by accident. In 1952 the famous Stargazers were to do a show from a ballroom in Ashton-under-Lyne where Harry was the band pianist. The group’s pianist couldn’t make the date and Harry was asked to
the piano
profile of HARRY HAYWARD
deputise. So well did he perform that he was advised to try for a BBC audition as a solo pianist.
“But I was so nervous I hadn’t the courage to apply,” he says. However, egged on by his wife Joan, he took the plunge and was eventually offered two Piano Playtime airings. From then on he became a regular broadcaster and now reckons he’s made over 2,000 broadcasts of one kind or another.
For relaxation, Harry indulges in piscatorial pastimes. Alright—fishing!
With so many hours of playing behind him, you’d think he’d be just a little tired of the piano. Not a bit of it. He puts in three hours of solid practice on his grand piano every day. In the evenings he leads his own trio at the Gainsborough Club in Salford.
Harry Hayward lives for the piano— the instrument he once violently detested.—Alan Stevens.
Alan Stevens
Johnny complains that accordion players tend to be treated as a bit of a joke by other musicians. Well, maybe it’s ‘accordion’ to what you play. Johnny needn’t worry, though. After eleven years with the instrument he’s well established as a thoroughly skilled performer.
At a night club recently I was shown to a table near to which there was a fairly large hole in the carpet. I suppose the waiter thought he’d put me in the , best place to see the floor show\
Singer Jane Western has returned to Manchester after two months in exotic climes—Germany, Switzerland. London and, wait for it, Sunderland! She’s wearing the latest fashion—a man’s string vest dyed black. Can’t think that the garment serves any useful purpose, except that it might come in useful for straining the peas.
Club 43. Manchester’s mecca of modernism, is now well-established in its new luxurious premises just off Shudehill. This is certainly the best appointed and most comfortable jazz club I’ve ever been in— and there’s musical quality to match. In fact, in terms of decor, seating, ventilation, lighting and prices of admission this must be the finest club in Britain. One member even ventured the opinion that it made Ronnie Scott’s club look like a rabbit hutch. I don’t quite subscribe to that view, but Manchester certainly has a modern jazz club that it can be very proud of.
John Wilkinson has opened a new club with the laudable intention of “presenting the blues as played by local musicians and singers and fostering the interest that exists in Manchester for the blues.”
New name needed
While I’m always pleased to welcome another club to the local scene. I must take exception to the name chosen by this club —The Gutter. Such a title gives an unfavourable impression and might well harm the near-respectable image now being enjoyed by jazz.
For years, I and many jazz devotees have struggled to get jazz accepted as an art form worthy of serious study. Giving clubs names such as The Gutter might undo everything. Alright, so jazz did come out of the gutter, "but I’m sure I’m voicing a majority opinion when I say that our favourite kind of music has long outlived the sordid surroundings in which it was spawned.
So, Mr. Wilkinson, what about a change of name? I’m sure you don’t want jazz to move backwards. Let’s help it to progress.
Listening to the Gary Cox Quartet recently I couldn’t help feeling that this Manchester group is one of the finest modern jazz combos in Britain. While tenor saxist Gary fronts the group and is undoubtedly the most musically accomplished of the quartet, this is certainly no star-soloist-with-rhythm-accompaniment outfit. The four work as a team, yet each makes an individual contribution. There’s complete empathy.
Their success, of course, springs from the stimulating, exciting, swinging and always interesting music they play. And possibly another reason is that Gary, Ian Taylor (bass), Dave Edwards (drums), and pianist Joe Palin (he once turned down a job with
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Gary is a man of forthright and fairly uncompromising opinions, so it is all the more surprising to find that he is quite a modest sort of fellow.
After I had complimented him on the standout performance his quartet had put on with Ruby Braff (July 6th in Manchester), I suggested that the audience had thoroughly enjoyed his group’s music. “Well, I don’t know,” he pondered. “They came here tonight to hear a star instrumentalist, not really to listen to us.”
Fair enough, but I’m sure that the Gary Cox Quartet made a pretty big impact on that audience, and whenever the boys play this venue again I guess a lot of folk will turn up to support them, even though Braff won’t be around.
Ian Mitchell is a comparative newcomer to Manchester. He’s a flautist and would welcome a blow now and again. I’ve put him in t9uch with one or two guys who might satisfy his musical longing. If you’re looking for a flute player (incidentally, he’s a good reader) why not contact Ian at 392 Rochdale Road, Harpurhey, Manchester.
When I called in at the Bossa Nova Club recently, the Dave Ellis Trio was at its swingiest. Pianist Dave has a fantastic technique which he parades throughout
each tune. But it’s not just a case of technique for technique’s sake—he never strays too far away from the melody.
Sterling support comes from Maurice Robinson -and what a beautifully big tone he gets out of his bass—and drummer Max Beeseley, who, although having something of a delicate touch, provi les tremendous drive.
Young Max is a fanatic, musicwise and healthwise. He practises for hours every day on his kit, he doesn’t smoke, doesn’t drink and puts in a daily stint on bodybuilding exercises. He’s got the craziest shoulders I’ve ever seen on a musician.
Alan Slater first became interested in jazz some eight years ago. Although he was then quite an accomplished pianist he bought a trombone. His first chance to play hot music came when he joined the Georgian Jazzmen. Later, he moved to the San Diego All-stars. More recently, Alan went back to the piano. For the last two months he’s been playing the American bases in France with the Three Dimensions.
Now he’s back here trying to form his own group of piano, bass, drums, trumpet and sax to take to the Continent. Says Alan: “Anyone interested in working
through Europe on a full-time basis will find it very rewarding, artistically and financially: rates of pay are far better than over
here.” Anyone interested in joining Alan on his next European expedition? Well, contact him at 22 Minto Street, Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire.
The next Alan Hare Big Band session will be at the Manchester Sports Guild on August 3rd. Laura Peters is now singing regularly with the band. While her contribution to the success of the band hardly matches that of the rest of the boys, there’s no doubt that when compared with them she is prettier, has a trimmer figure and more shapely legs.
One of Manchester’s most admired bassists was Arnold Egerton. A month ago local musicians were shocked and stunned by his sudden death. On July 12th Maurice Johnson and Johnny Whelan organised a special benefit session at the Midland Hotel, West Didsbury. All the proceeds, over £70. were given to Mrs. Egerton and her family. Scores of musicians—amateur, semi-pro and pro—were there. I’ve never seen so many of the guys in one place together before.
If you’ve any news, views, brickbats or bouquets why not contact me—Alan Stevens, 22 St. Lesmo Road, Stockport, Cheshire.
YOUR humble correspondent, clothed in 1 sackcloth and ashes, and complete with self-awarded MBE (Medal for Boobs and Errors), must commence this month by proffering no less than four apologies and correct surnames—drummer Ken Barnes at Gunton Hall, pianist Jimmy Willessey at the White Hart, Hopton, and my two ‘mates’ at the Nelson, Yarmouth—bassist Maurice Joel and tenor-man Derek Chaston. I can only attribute last month’s misspellings to not feeling well. In fact, my doctor, after a thorough examination iemarked: “There
doesn t appear to me to be anything wrong
but it could be drink?” “In that case,” responded I, “I’ll come back when you’re sober.”
Norfolk’s prize export, singer Linda Saxone, whose home is at Gorleston, came into the news again with the release on July 2nd of her latest disc, “I’ve Got To Say No; b/w “Another Day, Another Night” on the Polydor label. Manager Stanley Ritter writes to tell me that Linda has recently been working around the American bases in anrdT scoring in no uncertain manner with the U.^>. boys. She had to return to help promote her new record.
, Linda was the deserving subject of a press rave some weeks ago, while appearing at Michael s Club in Newcastle. Quote from North-East columnist Alan H. Brown: .Normally only a big name dare tackle that beautiful ballad. "My Colouring Book”, in
M,vnretb r°r thin,k • ■ 7 Last week at
Michael s, I listened to a lovely rendering of
this song by Linda Saxone—and so did every one else in the audience. This attractive redhead is professional enough to sing the kind of songs she likes, putting them over in such a way that one wonders whv no one ever thought of being so bold before ” .. . . what more can I say? East Anglia is justly proud of her . . .
Talking of records, several people have asked me whether or not I’ve made one at any time; I did, about five years ago. The company kept the record and released me!
Drummer Ray East has now joined the ranks of ex-pros, settled in the Suffolk and Norfolk areas and is making his home in Lowestoft. With his job as a footwear salesman at the Co-operative Society, plus a
Season residents in Jersey ... the Steve Stephenson Orchestra (Swanson’s Hotel), the Ronnie Caryl Band (Tam’s Starlight Room) and Vic Abbott and his Orchestra (Water-splash Theatre-Restaurant).
Always glad to hear from anyone, anywhere, at Flat Three, 2, Park Mansions, North Parade, Lowestoft.
number of pupils for drum tuition and most nights ‘gigging’, Ray is doing very nicely. During our chat in the interval when he called in at our residency the other evening, he enthused over sessions with Norwich bassist Pete Mitchell and his group who, incidentally, are getting in more work than they can manage.
At Mecca’s Norwood Rooms in Norwich while Chic Applin is on his summer rounds are Derrick .Alan and his Music and the Tony Howard Quartet. Rumour has it that Lowestoft pianist/leader Kenny Wall, currently at Hopton Holiday Camp with his group, is contemplating a disposal of his photographic business to turn pro. Singer Mary Courtney sings the praises of pianist Johnny Johnson after recent dates at the Westgate Club. Grantham. Pianist/entertainer Kenneth Shore is proving a popular attraction at the exclusive Carlton Hotel, Yarmouth, where he has been booked for the season.
DURING his sojourn with me at the former Highlight Club, I noted a few ‘titles’ from clarinettist Jimmy Long’s busking list . . . “Strangler On The Shore": “Bony Sara": “I’m In The Nude": "Gorger": “Lady, Be Crude"—and some unprintable ones. Anybody got further ideas on this subject.
Accompanying Edward Kent's Starlight Rendezvous show at Lowestoft Sparrow’s Nest Theatre this year are ex-Rabin pianist Alf Kaplan with Barry de Souza on drums and—back for his sixth consecutive summer —organist Robbie.
Jazz-style songstress Louise Hamilton is to star at the relatively new March Cabaret Club (Cambs.) during the last week in September. I've had the pleasure of backing her from time to time and she’s great.
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